For many of the tourists in Ho Chi Minh City, Bui Vien street is a very popular hang-out place. Located in the heart of the back packer area, Bui Vien is known by tourists and expats as “cheap bear area”or “backpack land”. On August 20, Bui Vien officially came into operation as the second walking street. On the first launching date, the pedestrian-only road was packed with thousands of locals and foreigners. We have collected some expats’ views on the establishment of the Bui Vien pedestrian thoroughfare.
The Bui Vien walking street stretches 850 meters long from the Bui Vien intersection with Tran Hung Dao-Nguyen Thai Hoc streets to Cong Quynh Street. According to the Chairman of the administration in Pham Ngu Lao Ward, making Bui Vien exclusive to pedestrians would help preserve its uniqueness and manage local business activities better. This project is also expected to attract more locals and foreign tourists.
Visitors gathering around 2 stages on the opening date of the Bui Vien walking street (Photo: Zing.vn)
Under the plan of the People’s Committee in District 1, the street will be active from 7 pm to 2 am every Saturday and Sunday. During this time period, vehicles will be prohibited. Live music performances will be held along the street on weekend nights between 8 pm to 10 pm. The shows will be performed in the spirit of street art, giving visitors the opportunity to enjoy a more artistic aspect of Vietnam. Tourists will also be allowed to perform.
In addition to the party-like atmosphere, tourists will also have a chance to taste mouth-watering Vietnamese street food, buy merchandise sold by the vendors on the pavement, play sports and folk games. They can enjoy such comfortable services as Free Wi-Fi and public toilets. Cameras will be installed and security guards will be deployed to ensure security for the area.
The opening of the Bui Vien walking street is expected to attract more locals and tourists. (Photo: Vnexpress)
As good as it might seem, the expats expressed different opinions on whether establishing Bui Vien as a pedestrian road a good idea and if they are interested in talking a walk there.
Stefano C. from London (England) said he would not walk down it. “I'm not interested in Bui Vien. The fact that it is a pedestrian only zone has nothing to do with it”. He complained about the services he has been offered such as high price for parking, overpriced drinks… However,for a mad night drink, Stefano regarded Bui Vien as a fine place.
On the contrary, Maskim E. from Russia stated he would walk in the Bui Vien street.He is also in support of the Bui Vien walking street, saying that “it will surely attract more tourists”.
Similarly, Alex S.from Canada expressed his viewpoint that “making Bui Vien pedestrian-only is probably a good movement from a public safety perspective”, as there will be less traffic accidents. However, he was afraid this will make people party “harder”. He suggested visitors should party in a safer way andsaid he would stroll down the street if he is in the mood for that.
Meanwhile, KerryK. from the USA believes it would begood overall if Bui Vien's revamp makes it a safer place for tourists andlocals as well as making the business in the area stronger. He also expressedhis happiness to see Saigon improving and becoming a better city. Kerry said hewould take a walk down the street if he had some meeting with friends there.
Bui Vien is a very popular destination for tourists in Ho Chi Minh city. (Photo: Goldentour)
Above are a few examples of what expats shared with us about the opening of the Bui Vien walking street. What do you think of this issue? Please make your comments below.